We were at Gawton’s Well. I say “we”, as I was with shamanic friend Julia. I was sitting beneath one of the guardian yew trees which congregate around the well head like static souls. Perched parrot-like I was rocking myself gently into a trance, intoning various snippets of near-silent whispers of wisdom. I was imparting my Imbolc feelings to the feral gathering of sprites and undines which I could sense gathering to observe my ritualistic movements.
I felt a connection emerging from the cluster of subtle threads that I will call my assemblage point (even though I am aware this deviates in usage from how Casteneda would have used it). They melted and flowed over the well water, seeking connection, sympathetic vibration, attention, information; and the more I relaxed into the feeling the stronger the connection became until I merged into the scene. Only a small modicum of attention – that I call The Keeper – remained to keep hold of the idea that I was just a human body in a world of known shapes and ideas.
I had prepared the space by floating a lit candle on the surface. Remember the image from the Camelot Tarot draw I had done at the start of the year? The Honoured Path at Wells, and a floating flame as its symbol. With this in place, a gently bobbing flicker of light fighting against the weather to keep itself alight. It was symbolic alright.
Imbolc to Spring quest
The candle flame was the literal light of Brigid for me. I sought out the sense of the light energy in the moment, in the day, in the season, in the conjunction of all that was new, bright, light and hopeful. From this conglomeration of spirit emerged a sentience with whom I could empathise and commune.
I concentrated on my question – what is the next quest to be performed before Spring Equinox? Like a whisper in the head the Brigid spirit forms a phrase for me:
“Kindle the flame.”
A hundred questions hurry to form hurdles to strew the path to comprehension, and as they begin to take hold my deep connection begins to drop those silky subtle threads one by one, and attention returns to the present moment. I struggle to hold my Otherworld connection to Brigid. Whilst some sentient semblance remains I form the question – “Is this literally a real flame?“.
It’s a stupid rational question and deserves a literal response. It gets one. The floating candle instantly goes out! I get up and re-light it. I settle into meditation again – seeking the same sweet spot as before. “Is there any more information about the quest?“, I ask. The candle goes out again. That will be a “No” then!
The darkness of the yews drew closer and the light began to shift but as a pressure would shift light into a convex form, temporarily bulging the scene then flipping back to flat reality.
My staff was leaning against a nearby tree – stock still and upright. Julia was meditating by the end of the well, huddled and hypnotized. For a moment the world had shifted into the next part of the year, but for me alone I realised. Now I was back into the communal world of shared reality. Time to do some work then!